America’s vast highways have done more than simply provide the nation and its residents endless ways to discover the country’s glory…they’ve also fueled what is set to become a nationwide restaurant phenomenon.

Chicago’s celebrated America’s Dog & Burger (AD&B), the tastiest idea to ever come out of a great American road trip, announced today its strategic franchising plan. Bursting onto Chicago’s culinary scene more than 20 years ago on the heels of two brothers’ automotive adventure that included tasting the best dog in each city along the way, AD&B launches its franchising initiative. The expansion plan meets the demand Americans are demonstrating for a higher caliber of mealtime dog and burger favorites served in an environment unlike any other. The growth strategy also represents the widespread craze building with seasoned franchise restaurant owners and investors to align with AD&B.

“After 23 years of proven success in the world’s culinary epicenter, it is clear that America’s Dog & Burger is in position for massive growth,” says Manolis Alpogianis, who with his brother George took the famed road trip and co-owns AD&B with him. “By franchising our distinctive concept, we’re confident this next step will strengthen the company and set the brand up for long-term success.”

Staying true to the brand’s slogan “Taste the Best from East to West,” AD&B uniquely positions itself in the dog and burger scene by offering guests a variety of the highest quality, fresh, gourmet burgers and city-themed hot dogs available in the quick-serve category. Accompanying the franchise initiative, AD&B is launching this spring its most innovative menu to date, including a collection of chef-driven items, which include eight burgers and hot dogs.

The creative and indulgent options range from the Santa Fe Hot Dog (Vienna all beef hot dog, hardwood smoked bacon, chipotle aioli, caramelized onions, beer battered jalapeno caps and cotija cheese on a Texas toast roll) to the Ghost Burger (hardwood smoked bacon, spicy ghost pepper cheese, guacamole and onion strings on a butter brioche bun). And, beyond its acclaimed city dogs and burgers, AD&B is also unveiling a selection of chicken sandwiches, salads and sides. Everything on the menu is fresh, never frozen and all ingredients are prepared in-house.

“We’re channeling the same energy and excitement into franchising and our refreshed menu that we had when we originally brought local flavors back to the home of the hot dog—Chicago,” says Manolis, who with George is also a partner of TAG Restaurants, his family’s multi-restaurant group in Chicago that operates several well-known concepts, including the awarding-winning Kappy’s Restaurant & Pancake House in Morton Grove, Illinois. “Fact is, we have applied Chicago’s incredible culinary scene to our unique brand and it has sustained a loyal fan following for more than two decades. We’ve had countless franchise requests over the years and now we’re ready to answer that calling.”

The strategic AD&B franchise growth will initially focus on expanding into key markets from Southern Wisconsin through Chicagoland and into Northwest Indiana. Plans call for 30 franchise locations to be added to these regions. National growth outward from its Midwest core will follow.

Maintaining a recipe for success, AD&B currently has three locations, each situated at prime destinations—Chicago’s Navy Pier, O’Hare Airport and in Chicago’s Loop at the corner of Randolph and State Streets.

“We’ve pursued a dream, and it means the world to us to connect with passionate entrepreneurs that want to be a part of a cutting-edge concept like ours that is redefining its segment,” says Manolis. “Our processes and systems are fine-tuned and we have developed training programs that will allow our AD&B franchisees to effectively execute everything from marketing to restaurant management, build-out and design.”

In regards to the latter, AD&B has developed a new prototype design that will be rolled out with all franchise locations. Likewise, the new design is an inspiration for the remodeling project set to occur later this year at the brand’s existing Randolph Street location. Gensler, the esteemed international design firm, recreated the restaurant’s interior to exude a classic, all-American eatery. The revamped layout features new community picnic-style benches and tables and channels the nostalgia of the original road trip, all adding to the restaurant’s fun, casual and inviting atmosphere.

With the design prototype and new menu firmly in place, AD&B has engineered its franchise concept to minimize restaurant development costs, expand territory options and maximize return on investment, all while delivering a world-class dining experience.

AD&B’s business model, made up of extensive site selection procedures, training programs and marketing support, is designed to attract individuals with a strong business acumen, proven restaurant industry success and an interest in multi-unit franchising. The investment starts at $289,800, which includes the initial franchise fee.

Franchising, News